The Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) issued its statement this afternoon after being asked by the Marietta Police Department to investigate an incident in which a man allegedly armed with a compound bow was shot by an officer after refusing to drop the weapon.
[The Cobb County Courier has a policy of withholding or redacting the name of suspects unless and until the person is convicted in a court of law or enters a plea of guilty. All suspects are innocent until proven guilty, and the internet has no effective way of removing reports of arrest if the person is exonerated. We do make exceptions in high-profile cases or charges against public officials where exoneration is likely to be as widely publicized as the initial arrest]
The GBI public information release described their investigation as follow:
The early investigation indicates that at 6:53 a.m., there was a carjacking near 1438 Peachtree Street in Atlanta. A man, later identified as [Name redacted by the Courier], age 29, of Canton, GA, had just attempted to carjack someone else. [Name redacted] was armed with a bow and arrow. At approximately 7:45 a.m., a Cobb County Police Officer responded to a vehicle crash involving [Name redacted] at South Marietta Parkway and Atlanta Street in Marietta, Georgia. The vehicle crashed into a bridge support for a CSX rail line that passes over South Marietta Parkway. [Name redacted] got out of the passenger’s side of the vehicle with the bow and arrow and pointed it at the Cobb County officer. A Marietta Police Department officer had arrived on scene to back up the Cobb County Police officer. One of the officers fired at least one round, hitting [Name redacted].
[Name redacted] was treated at the scene and transported to Wellstar Kennestone Hospital in Marietta. He is reportedly in stable condition.
No officers were injured in this incident.
The GBI is conducting an independent investigation of the officer involved shooting and a separate investigation regarding the aggravated assault incident involving [Name redacted] Once complete, the casefile will be given to the Cobb County District Attorney’s Office for review.
This is the 75th officer involved shooting the GBI has been requested to investigate in 2021.
The GBI’s role in officer-involved shootings
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation routinely investigates the shooting of individuals by police officers, as well as any time an officer discharges a firearm while on duty, at the request of the police agency involved in the shooting.
Natalie Ammons, the Deputy Director of the GBI’s Office of Public Affairs explained to us how the system works.
Police agencies are not required to request outside investigation of officer involved shootings, and there is no formal agreement between the GBI and local police departments.
But police agencies make the request so that an independent agency does the investigation in an incident involving their own officers.
The investigations are carried out by Special Agents in a regional office within the area where the police agency is located. Cobb County, and much of the rest of metro Atlanta, is in the GBI’s Region 10, based in Conyers.
In Region 10, officer involved shootings and corruption investigations are the primary investigations Special Agents do, while in more rural areas with fewer police resources the agents handle a wider range of criminal investigations.
There is no special unit or division that conducts the investigation of officer involved shootings.
The announcements of the investigations can be found at the GBI’s press release web page.